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Messages - pliskadm

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Head Problems
« on: July 26, 2010, 12:21:07 PM »
IMO, 80 is far too hot for pitching and I prefer to pitch and ferment almost all ales in the low-mid 60s.  At the temps you;re using, oats (or other added protein) may not do much to help you.
What do you do to keep your fermentation temp that low?

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Head Problems
« on: July 26, 2010, 12:01:10 PM »
My mash stabilizes at around 155 or less (try to keep it at 150) and I pitch the yeast at about 80degrees F.  My last batch, I kept the glass fermenter in the bathroom and kept a wet towel wrapped around it to keep the temp stabilized at about 70 give or take a degree or two.  This batch so far I can't get below 71-72 degrees with a wicking wet t-shirt technique(the recipe calls for 68 degrees fermentation temp).  I also added a half pound of flaked oats to the mash to help increase the protein content.  What exactly dictates a temperature that is too hot for pitching and fermentation?  I have also noted that the last beer has the bubbles needed, just nothing to help retain that lovely foam (glass  cleanliness is not the issue).

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All Grain Brewing / Head Problems
« on: July 21, 2010, 04:49:44 PM »
Hello all,
I plan to brew again this Sunday for my 4th all grain batch.  I have had a problem with getting my brews to develop and hold a good head on them.  Most of the time the brew tastes exceptionally good, with great carbonation, but it just has no or very little head.  I have mainly brewed IPA style beers using 2-Row Pale malt and I like pellet hops more than whole flowers or plugs.  This next batch is going to be a "Cascadian Dark Ale" from the July/Aug 2010 issue of Brew Your Own.  Has anyone encountered head problems?  My mash has always been on the mark for temp and time, and I use a CF wortchiller for a good cold break.  I could really use some direction on this matter..

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Barley Crusher in today!
« on: June 23, 2010, 01:26:25 AM »
I have a Corona Mill and have done 2 batches now with it (by hand crank). First batch was 18.5 lbs and the second was 17.5 lbs.  I know the pain you speak of but to me its all in a day of brewing..or the day or two before.

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General Homebrew Discussion / Muslin Hop bags hinder utilization?
« on: June 22, 2010, 12:58:19 PM »
I brewed yesterday using muslin hop bags with hop pellets.  I noticed that the bag was pretty stiff after I tied a knot and thought that this may end up hurting my hop aroma, flavor etc since the surface area of the hops is drastically reduced when bundling them up in a bag like that.  This technique is used in cooking alot as well, where one will use cheese cloth and create what is called a sachet bag filled with herbs and spices and throw it into the stock pot to boil or simmer with the rest of the ingredients.  However I always felt this was doing the same thing, of reducing the efficiency of flavor extraction.  What is the general opinion about hop bag usage?

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All Grain Brewing / Siphoning wort into Counterflow wort chiller
« on: June 22, 2010, 12:51:09 PM »
Yesterday I brewed an all grain batch.  This is my second official all grain batch (the first won me a 1st place in my category and 2nd overall in a local homebrew competition) and this is the first time I have used my newly constructed counterflow wort chiller.  I used a copper racking cane that I made, connected with flexible PEX tubing with a valve right above the wort inlet on the chiller.  My problem is with the siphon.  Both when I practiced with cool cleansing solution as well as with the real deal, when I would get the siphon working, it would stop right at about half the volume of the brew pot.  I have a picture attached below to help demonstrate how this all went down.  Does anyone have any idea why my siphon fails like this or have any of you had troubles in this nature?


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Pimp My System / Re: Post a System
« on: June 13, 2010, 06:45:09 PM »
The scooter is my getaway ride for when the crazies come lookin for the "hooch makers"!

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Homebrewing and children bad??
« on: June 11, 2010, 11:49:01 AM »
Thanks for your help everyone.  The inspector lady came and just peeked in the garage.  She saw nothing out of the ordinary and then said she never even heard of such a thing as homebrewing and added that she wouldn't even know what it looked like. It all comes down to peoples perceptions about this hobby.  I almost get offended when people say that they could see how I look like an alcoholic,  and more so when people say that my equipment looks like some drug manufacturing lab.  It just goes to show one how ignorant people can really begin to ruin your day.  But I try not to worry and just have a homebrew!

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Pimp My System / Re: Post a System
« on: May 22, 2010, 07:35:44 AM »
This is my system:

always upgrading as long as I have the money for it..

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General Homebrew Discussion / Homebrewing and children bad??
« on: May 22, 2010, 07:17:21 AM »
Hello all,
I am new to this both brewing and writing on forums, but I have a question to pose to the world.  Let me start with a little background story:  I am a 24 y/o college student at a local university for Mechanical Engineering who has recently fallen in love with homebrewing.  I live with a 47 y/o male and 49 y/o female and their grand-daughter.  I brew with the 47 y/o male that I live with.  The reason their grand-daughter is living their is because the mother of that girl is a derelict mother who has no care or want to be with this child.  Without going into details on all the drama that is involved, basically there will be a court hearing to grant the grand-parents that I live with to have legal guardianship over the child so as to minimize future drama from the derelict mother who currently resides with a boyfriend who uses drugs and alcohol and has weapons around the house.  Because an investigator had to walk through their house to validate the claims of drug use etc, these people have slung $h!t our way telling this investigator that we are alcoholics who brew beer in the garage.  This investigator has notified us that she will have to make a walk-through the house to "make sure we aren't brewing beer in the garage" next week.  My question is: is it a bad thing to brew with children in the house? I thought it was a wholesome activity that the entire family can get involved in as long as we contain the final product properly away from minors..

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